The Bryant Center staff ranges from the born-again Christian to the closet atheist, from the feel-good spiritual guru to the detox drill sergeant. As in real-life treatment centers, most are former addicts, some still struggling with the very demons running through the center's halls. These characters have hit rock bottom and lived to share their stories. No punches are pulled, no feelings are spared, there are no elephants in the room.
Senator Calvin Bryant (1926-1976)
Chief Executive Officer
No stranger to the pain suffered by the addicted and those that love them, Julianne Bryant is unrelenting in her quest to help others find lifelong sobriety. Her innovative method, applied with resounding success at the Calvin Bryant Center, is time tested and proven to turn the despair of addiction into the fruit of recovery.
But, as in any booming corporation, every expansion and cross-promotion overshadows another founding principal lost in the wash. Julianne will be forced to take a hard look at where The Center is today and how it's gone terribly off course. She will fight inside and out to defend and rediscover the place she once dreamed could change the world.
Foster has worked with Julianne Bryant since The Center’s inception. He spends most of his time on the road, meeting families for private interventions. A recovering alcoholic and current (albeit closeted) sex and food addict, he's is a gifted therapist in his own right. When he shouted down a screaming heroin addict during his first appearance on Oprah, he earned a lifetime association with the phrase, "Get to a point where you can make it into work everyday". To this day, he runs into bumper stickers reading, "Just gettin' to work everyday..."
After a secret romance with Julianne ended badly, Foster poured himself into his specialty, providing The Center with a steady stream of freshly intervened addicts. But, as their focus and future is challenged, Julianne will ask for more of him. As Foster returns full-time with his own ideas about the place he helped build, this is a request she may come to regret.
Shelby is razor-smart, but hides her intelligence behind her Sally Hershberger highlights and pampered Beverly Hills Jewess background. Never having struggled with substance abuse, she loves her job as the first face of The Center and relishes “recruiting” new clients while at the hottest clubs and industry events. She’s a self-aware star-fucker and is still fascinated by the ugly, destructive effects of fame.
With her relationship with her own workaholic family strained at best, Shelby has found a heroic mother-figure in Julianne and a supportive father-figure in Foster. But, as time has taken The Center to dizzying new heights, it has also distanced her from those she has grown to love. Shelby will do whatever it takes to keep her surrogate family and their Center together.
Head of Physical Recovery
After major success in the 90s boy-band Catch-22 as “JR Cruz,” Joe squandered his fortune on drugs, a blood-sucking entourage, and a list of sexual partners that rivaled Bowie's. He hit every rehab west of the Mississippi before landing at the Bryant Center and finally coming clean. He learned to channel his compulsions into his physicality and an emphasis on self that puts narcissism to shame. He went on to get his PhD in Physical Education and returned to the Bryant Center to join the staff. His charm, his pursuit of physical perfection and his decision to remain abstinent make him all the more irresistible.
Despite being new to The Center and a virtual stranger to Julianne, the shake-up on the horizon will force him to step out of his self-preservative box and re-discover what happens when you connect.
Director of Operations
Phil moved to LA and joined The Bryant Center in 2001, after September 11 "killed the PR Industry in New York with touchy-feely I Heart-NYness." His publicity background put him right at home with the strict client confidentiality, press massage and damage control essential to The Center. A slick-dick fast talker, Phil has made few friends at work, but has embraced the LA scene with reckless abandon as a self-anointed “Hollywood Power Gay.”
Julianne trusts his business instincts, and he idolizes her all the more because she actually believes her own bullshit. He sees himself as the obvious heir to her growing empire, which makes it easy to justify skimming money where he can -- that, and an occasional inside tip to the tabloids when a cover-worthy guest is checking in or enjoying a "private" hike. The impending upheaval at The Center is the PR nightmare of Phil's dreams; he couldn't have planned it better himself. But there are eyes watching him, and Phil's not as safe as he thinks.
Aaron Levy, C.C.D.C.
A Certified Chemical Dependency Counselor and pioneer in faith-based recovery methods, Aaron became a born again Christian in 2003 after the death of his infant granddaughter. Now integrating his faith into most of his work, he has become less and less effective as his inward and outward judgment grows. He lives in Woodland Hills with his wife, Mabel and their four King Charles Spaniels.
Schooled at the Avatar Center in San Francisco, Alison’s unorthodox take on counseling has made her an integral part of The Center’s success. She has dedicated her life to seeing the innermost issues and pain dwelling within her patients, with little to no verbal input from the patient. Sought-after as a speaker at New Age conventions and expos, Alison’s first book, Speak Without Words, I Listen will be published in 2007.
Oliver Kendall, PhD
Resident Therapist (Mid-Season)
Great looking, athletic, outdoorsy, and almost too good to believe, Oliver joins The Center after a high-profile staff shake-up. A widower, he has three children, 16, 14 and 12 who spend the school year with him and the summers in Salt Lake City with their grandparents. He loves his work at The Center, and finds the place and its clientele challenging, but inspiring. A devout Mormon, he believes that substance abuse, even in moderation, is an unnecessary distraction, but enjoys a Diet Coke on ice from time to time.
A partner at Robert Shapiro’s firm during the OJ Simpson trial, Patricia is no stranger to bad blood and worse publicity. She typically hates women, but agreed to take on The Center’s legal work after Julianne and her Method helped Patricia's kid brother kick his OxyContin addiction. She’s never been married and resents happy people.
Kylie Laughlin, R.N.
Kylie has been with the The Bryant Center for eight years as the primary intake and detox nurse. A recovered addict herself, she was engaged to a drummer in an 80’s glam rock band. The day he overdosed and died in her arms, she vowed never again to see someone destroy themselves. She’s been unattached since her fiancé's death…her life is dedicated to The Center and the tortured souls that fill its sun-drenched suites.
Relatively new to The Center, Ben is eager to please and anxious to make a good impression with the staff. He works primarily as Kylie’s assistant, but is also allowed significant access to the higher profile clients, when special needs arise. He is gay, but keeping it (unsuccessfully) on the DL. He lives with his best girlfriend in the same Calabasas apartment they shared while attending Pepperdine University.
Click below to return to your regularly scheduled